The Word of the Month: "Truth" — Novella McClung
The word for today is truth. Truth, according to Merriam-Webster.com “is a body of real things.” Dictionary.com defines truth as”the actual state of a matter.” Truth is used to mean fact or reality. Most of us think of truth as the opposite of lying. We all want others to tell the truth but some misuse the truth to fit what they want to do.
Our daughter was four. I found her in the kitchen with chocolate icing covering her face like a mask. After viewing the once chocolate icing covered cake on the table I asked, “What happened to the icing?” “I don’t know.” “Child, you ate all the icing off the cake.” “I did not” was her reply. “Tell me the truth.” “I didn’t do it.” She tried her best to convince me of what she viewed as truth. Her reasoning, there was some icing left on the cake that she had been unable to reach. We did not teach her to stretch the truth. We tried to teach her truth but we live in a world that misuses truth.
In John 18:38a, we find Pilot asking Jesus, “What is truth?” Pilot’s question seems to be more philosophical than truth seeking. Pilot was faced with what to do with Jesus. He did not want to deal with the Jewish people and any problems causing him more headaches and bringing Rome to give him trouble. Pilot denied the truth. He chose to live in the chaos of his life and believe that was life as it was meant to be.
Jesus does not mess around with philosophical ideas. He plainly stated in John 14:6, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” Jesus is stating a fact. Jesus is stating truth. People can choose to ignore the truth or they can embrace the truth. It is your choice but truth does not change!
John gives us more insight into truth in Second John, verse two where he commends believers for ‘walking in truth.” John is excited and delighted that his “children” were living out what they knew – that Jesus is THE truth. This ‘actual state of the matter’ (truth) became their lifestyle. Truth showed up in their attitude, words and deeds. They knowingly acted on this truth – Jesus lived, died and rose for them – set them free from the perils of sin. They chose to abide in His truth.
We all have a sinful nature because of choices made in the Garden of Eden. We must pay attention to God’s directions in our lives in order to ‘hear’ the truth. Jesus tells us in John 8:44 that when you choose to believe Satan’s lies “… (he) does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him…” Jesus is THE truth and we must base our lives on His example.
Reverend Billy Graham said, “Millions of people attend church services without having a personal relationship with Christ. I used to be taken to church by my parents, and I hated church. But when I was a teenager, I received Christ as my Savior. When I went back to church, I said to my parents, ‘The pastor certainly is preaching wonderful sermons.’ And they replied, ‘He’s preaching the same type of sermons, but you’re listening with different ears.’ And I was.” Reverend Graham heard the truth but did not listen to God’s directions. When he (and each of us) ask God to show us His truth; help us understand His Word as truth then we are paying attention to the truth.
What is truth is an age-old question? Truth has been debated since time began because man chose in the beginning to listen to the serpent’s lies and not God. God had/has a standard and truth is being faithful to that standard. God is Holy, Righteous and Pure. We are sinners and cannot come before God in our condition – that is God’s standard. The truth is that Jesus stood in our place (took all our sins) on the cross of Calvary. His death, burial and resurrection paved the way for us to meet God’s standards. What is truth? Jesus is THE truth! Jesus is not ‘a truth or any truth but THE truth.
After you read this article ask God to reveal His truth to you in every area of your life – personal, home, work, family, church and most of all that you’re living His truth as He planned. Remember, His truth is fact, the actual state of a matter,’ seek His truth daily.